Every year, nearly half the world’s population uses Google. According to Internet Live Stats, Google processes over 40,000 search queries every second. In that same second, internet users view over 76,000 YouTube videos, a streaming service designed by Google. Across the globe there are now over two billion active android devices, a mobile operating system designed by Google. Google uses these services to track users and collect information about them.
It’s now reality: Google has monopoly power over the flow of information. Google has control over the dissemination and manipulation of information around the world. Google algorithms can either suppress information or promote it. Because of this, Google Inc. is susceptible to political and ideological censorship, affecting billions of users who use Google services annually. With this power, Google interferes with elections, business, and people’s livelihoods. There are industries and political agendas that influence Google, industries that will do whatever it takes to shut down truthful speech and manipulate how people think.
Google refuses to be held accountable to First Amendment standards
Google is not a neutral platform, so search results are engineered to highlight the viewpoints that matter most to Google executives and their cult culture. Rich and influential people, emboldened by their special interests, practically lobby Google to push their agendas while suppressing any dissent or competition on the web. While some ideologies are popularized by Google, others are pushed to the shadows, de-monetized and mocked.
Google is under fire for censoring conservative website PragerU. Very few organizations have the legal firepower to fight back against Google, but PragerU has taken Google to court. Google’s true intentions are being exposed. In a statement filed with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, Google argues that government regulation would have “disastrous practical consequences.”
In their statement, Google makes it clear they do not want to be held to the standard of the First Amendment. Google refuses to change for its users; Google refuses to guarantee users an equal platform for freedom of speech. The anti-American behemoth refuses to enforce the First Amendment across their services because this “would undermine important content regulation.” Google stated, “If they are bound by the same First Amendment rules that apply to the government, YouTube and other service providers would lose much of their ability to protect their users against offensive or objectionable content — including pornography, hate speech, personal attacks, and terrorist propaganda.”
U.S. should appoint third-party judicial commission to review censorship cases
Google should still remain in control over its own content regulation, but the United States should appoint a third party commission to review Google’s actions when complaints of political, business, and ideological censorship are brought forth. With so much power over information and with mounting complaints of censorship coming against Google, it is imperative that a judicial review committee hold Google accountable when they are violating the free speech rights of people on the internet.
According to their legal statement, Google still believes their company can discriminate on the basis of political viewpoints, because they “can’t be forced to change.” What Google does not understand is that, with the proper legal oversight, their monopoly can be forced to operate more fairly, without engaging in anti-competitive practices that benefit their own agendas and the goals of their highly influential friends. People and organizations that are censored by Google deserve the right to bring forth their case and have their voice be heard. Google can be forced to respect people’s First Amendment rights and can be legally required to correct their algorithms when they are using their technology to abuse content creators, advertisers, and search engine users. The rule of law should be upheld.